Grant will help train local workers in the shale and natural gas - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Grant will help train local workers in the shale and natural gas industry

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BOARDMAN, Ohio - A grant will help local workers train for jobs in the shale oil and natural gas industry.

Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 held a pipe cutting ceremony at its union hall in Boardman to announce a grant and match totaling about $130,000 that will provide training for workers in our region.

The training will be geared to developing skills necessary to work in the shale, oil and natural gas industry. "The goal is to take displaced workers who might be out of work in another field, who are interested in welding [and] in the opportunity to work in oil and gas. To bring them to local 396 in the plumbers and pipefitters education area and teach them a skill in welding which is very much in demand because of the growth in the oil and gas industry," said Jason Wilson from the Governor's Office of Appalachia.

The grant will also pay for training for foreman and help retain existing jobs.

The idea started with former Columbiana Commissioner Penny Traina and grew from there with the collaborative work of Eastgate Regional Council of Governments, the Appalachian Regional Commission, Governor John Kasich's office, and the bipartisan support of Congressmen Bill Johnson and Tim Ryan.

The grant would not be possible without the Appalachian designation

"Business, labor, Democrat, Republican, the local union, the local community college; this has been the model we've been working on for 10 years of collaboration and we are really starting to see the benefits of being able to work together," said Congressman Tim Ryan

Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 also took part in the ground work and will provide the critical training.

Specific details about the timing of the program are being worked out.

"Eastern Gateway Community College will be doing the interviews and the testing and the clearance," said Roland Taylor from Plumbers and Fitters Local 396.

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